Although it might sound impossible to imagine solar panels that do not require sunlight, it is possible. Solar panels are a key component of the revolution to provide more clean energy for people. These energy conductors do have one problem.
To create energy, they need direct sunlight. But what if that flaw could be eliminated? AuREUS is a new solar panel that does not rely on direct sunlight for energy generation.
These solar panels can generate electricity without sunlight
How can you make solar panels that do not rely on the sun upon? You don’t. You don’t have to. Instead, solar panels can be made that absorb the sun’s ultraviolet rays.
Carvey Ehren Maigue is a Mapua University student in the Philippines. Maigue used luminescent particles made from vegetable and fruit waste to create the panels. These same particles absorb ultraviolet rays from the Sun and convert them to visible light.
Maigue used these particles to create a solar film that can capture ultraviolet rays. The film converts the ultraviolet rays into visible sunlight, which can be used to produce energy.
This is a clever idea that will help reduce waste all around the globe. It doesn’t depend on sunlight so it can still generate power when it is cloudy. The prototype is a 3-by-2-foot panel that was installed in Maigue’s window.
However, it can generate enough electricity to charge two smartphones each day. Maigue believes that it can be scaled up to allow buildings to run entirely off their own electricity.
Expanding renewable energy
Solar panels that do not require sunlight are exciting because they can scale up. Flexible is the film-like panel Maigue designed. It is made from resin and can be used to attach pieces of clothing. It was so innovative that it was awarded the Sustainability Award by the James Dyson Foundation in 2020.
The flexibility of the solar film means that there are plenty of opportunities for new innovators to come up with new uses. The basic design Maigue used may still be useful. To collect electricity, you would simply need to apply the film to your windows. You don’t have to worry about costly solar panels on your roof, or installing them in a different way. It could be installed in cars too, providing new energy sources for electric vehicles.
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